The Government's employment training scheme University for Industry
(Ufi) has announced a boost in media relations activity as it attempts
to attract more recruits.
Consolidated Communications has been hired, following a COI-organised
pitch and on a three-month project basis, to drive enrolment to its
1,300 learndirect centres.
And Elizabeth Underwood, Ufi corporate comms manager, has indicated that
more pitches will takes place next year for further campaigns.
Just 500,000 people have used the scheme, since it was set up in
The Department for Education and Skills, which funds the scheme, wants
to boost this number to one million a year by 2005.
Consolidated has been hired to handle a £300,000, predominantly
media relations campaign to take place between January and March.
The Ufi already has three retained PR firms, handling liaison with local
authorities and regional media relations.
Citigate Public Affairs handles UK-wide PA, Strategy Wales PA and media
work in Wales and Weber Shandwick Worldwide on a PA and media relations
brief in Northern Ireland. All were hired following a COI pitch in
August (PRWeek, 17 August).
Consolidated will work alongside WSW and Strategy Wales on campaigns in
their regions. All agencies report to Underwood, who heads a six-strong
team based in Sheffield.
She said: 'This will be followed by more campaigns, the hiring of
agencies will be handled by the COI'
In September The Grayling Group helped Ufi with a media relations
campaign to promote the learndirect helpline.
Phil Wade, Ufi marketing and comms director has appointed Cheryl Simm as
head of marketing.
She joined two weeks ago from company Financial Services.